Daily vitamin intake for adults and minerals your body needs as you age
The age of people, alas, is not long. Already after 30, you begin to feel that you are slowly losing ground: you get tired more and faster, you do not endure diseases so easily, the first age-related changes appear. This is normal, at least from an evolutionary point of view.
But we are not ancient people who write off everything to the will of higher beings. We will not humbly wait for health problems to finish us off, but we are inflicting a preemptive blow on them. And this helps because life expectancy is gradually increasing with the development of medicine and understanding of the processes in the body.
The intake of vitamins and minerals, which are not enough to replenish the balance in food, can also be attributed to such a preventive blow. Your body needs some nutrients more with age.
With age, the absorption of calcium deteriorates, due to which the body begins to lose more of this mineral than it receives from the outside. Since calcium is responsible for bone health and muscles, blood vessels, nerves, and other important parts, a lack of this mineral can lead to serious disorders. That is why older people break bones with a fairly light fall, which would only lead to injury in youth.
Doctors recommend increasing the amount of calcium intake for men over 70 and women over 50. But it is best to get tested regularly to detect a drop in calcium levels and start taking it before the deficiency affects health. It is also worth providing a constant supply of this mineral from dairy products.
Vitamin D is closely associated with calcium, helping it be absorbed, which is why drugs most often combine both of these substances. Vitamin D supports muscle, nerve, and immune function. At a young age, this vitamin is synthesized by sunlight and comes from certain foods such as oily fish such as salmon, mackerel, and herring. But with age, the ability to produce this vitamin decreases, which causes problems with immunity, apathy, or depression.
Vitamin B6 is used by the body to strengthen the immune system and provide cells with energy. This is one of those trace elements, the lack of which can affect the personality, impairing memory.
Conversely, scientists have found a link between high blood levels of this vitamin in the elderly and good memory. However, if the change has already taken place and the person has dementia, getting enough vitamin B6 will no longer help improve mental performance. Legumes, especially chickpeas, liver, and oily fish, are high in vitamin B6.
Vitamin B9, also known as folic acid, is essential for synthesizing DNA and certain amino acids. Adequate amounts of this vitamin contribute to proper cell growth and protection against certain types of cancer.
As the absorption of vitamins decreases with age and mistakes in cell division become more frequent, it is necessary to take in a sufficient amount of this vitamin to reduce cancer risk.
You can rebalance it with leafy greens, nuts, legumes, and other foods.
Vitamin B12 helps in the production of blood and nerve cells. Most of our vitamin B12 comes from meat, fish, eggs, dairy products, and other animal foods. Therefore, vegans have to add dietary supplements to their diet to stay healthy.
About 30% of people by the age of 50 have atrophic gastritis – thinning of the gastric mucosa, which leads to a deterioration in the absorption of nutrients from food. Because of this, it is poorly absorbed, including B12.
Our bodies need magnesium for normal protein production, bone growth, and maintaining stable blood sugar levels. As with calcium, absorption decreases with age. In addition, magnesium is easily flushed out of the body with medications, which become more abundant with age.
Without replenishment of these losses, muscle spasms, sleep disturbances, apathy, arrhythmia, hypertension, gastrointestinal disorders, and other problems occur. You can replenish the balance with green leafy vegetables, fruits, berries, chocolate, nuts, seeds, cereals, and legumes.
Like calcium with vitamin D, potassium is closely related to magnesium. Potassium is poorly absorbed from food when magnesium is deficient, and can only reach its potential with a sufficient amount of this element. That is why most dietary supplements with potassium also contain magnesium.
Potassium is essential for all systems and helps protect the body from cardiovascular disorders such as high blood pressure and reduces the risk of stroke, osteoporosis, and other diseases. Due to magnesium deficiency in age, there is also a lack of potassium, which leads to disruption of the work of the heart and skeletal muscles.
You can replenish potassium from legumes, spinach, cabbage, dates, potatoes, fish, mushrooms, and chocolate.
Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids are among the most important micronutrients found in cell membranes and blood vessels. It is not synthesized in the required quantities, and its balance is restored mainly from the outside with certain food. Its absorption deteriorates with age.
In addition, people often develop a chronic deficiency of this trace element due to malnutrition in youth. This, in turn, increases the risk of Alzheimer’s disease, macular degeneration that causes blindness, and other diseases. Therefore, it is worth including oily fish such as mackerel and herring, chia seeds, and seaweed.
Zinc supplies the body with energy maintains immunity in good shape and improves the digestive system and metabolism. Plus, getting enough zinc in your body enhances brain function. The problem is that many people lack this element in their bodies, as they do not consume enough zinc-rich foods.
This includes oysters, beef, crabs, lobsters, pork, yogurts, legumes, seeds, and grains. As you can see, most of the listed products are not affordable for many people, which is why their body suffers from a constant zinc deficiency.
Selenium supports the proper functioning of the immune system and the thyroid gland, protects cells from damage and infections, and also keeps muscles in good shape. Maintaining a selenium balance in the body can help reduce the risk of brain and personality disorders, cancer, and thyroid disease.
With age, the absorption of selenium deteriorates. Plus, many people don’t get enough of this micronutrient throughout their lives. The lack of selenium, as well as its excess, negatively affects the body. The daily requirement for selenium is 70-100 mcg, corresponding to about one Brazilian nut per day. By the way, it is also a good source of magnesium.